Out & About – Espresso Martini at Melt Pizzeria

By The Lady and The Gentleman

After sampling the latest Coffee Experiment from Loft Wine Bar we were reminded of an experience that we meant to write up but never got round to…until now. It was during the height of the crazy February-March Adelaide event season when we managed to nab the last counter spot at one of our favourite city locations, Melt Pizzeria. It had been a long and hectic day and aside from wanting some damn fine pizza The Lady had one other craving on her mind, the perfect Espresso Martini. Let us tell you dear readers that we came pretty close to finding it that day.


Our bartender buzzed around like a mad thing and we only caught glimpses of what was going into this glorious creation. Vodka, a large shot of freshly made espresso, and magic. The first thing we noticed and admired was the heavenly, strong coffee aroma with something a little extra going on and the thick, inviting foam. Try as we might we can never quite get enough of that delicious foam that elevates an okay to cocktail to the spectacular. We had to bow down in appreciation of the epic foam on the Melt Espresso Martini, which made you just want to eat it up. We almost didn’t want to take a sip, it looked so damn good. Of course, we did, we’re only human after all.


Taking that first amazing sip the hidden scent in the aroma was revealed, a delicious note of orange. It was almost like drinking the best damn alcoholic, coffee infused Jaffa cake dreamt up in an Adriano Zumbo fever dream. The bitterness of the coffee was balanced out by the light creaminess of the foam and the slight sweetness and acidity of the orange yet it still tasted strong enough to keep you perked up all night long. We’ve done our own experiments with coffee and orange and this just confirmed that these two flavours deserve to be up there with other great partnerships throughout history like Ben & Jerry, Hewlett & Packard, Mawson and all the other guys who went to Antarctica but no one ever remembers. We’d like to say more but our urge to devour this amazing glass of coffee goodness took over. What we’ll leave you with is a throwing down of the gauntlet and a promise. This is probably the best Espresso Martini we’ve ever had. Period. Therefore, the rest of the Adelaide bar scene has been put on notice because we’re coming and the bar has been set.


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Out & About – Loft Oyster & Wine Bar Autumn Menu Launch 2015

By The Lady and The Gentleman

With the changing of the weather from bright, sunny, and sometimes unbearably hot Summer days to the cooler, wetter, and darker Autumn, classy Gouger St watering hole Loft Oyster & Wine Bar have launched their Autumn Menu featuring seasonally inspired cocktails and food. As you already know we are big fans of what Loft Wine Bar do (you can see our prior thoughts here and here) and we were lucky enough to attend a delightful evening at the Loft where we were able to sample the newest creations on offer. The Loft’s close proximity to the Central Markets mean they are always aware of what’s fresh and in season and like their menu to reflect that. Needless to say we were quite impressed with what the Loft will be dishing out to its customers all through Autumn.

Loft Cobbler2

Stop. Cobbler Time.

The whole evening had a fun and slightly theatrical air as our knowledgeable and charming host Eddie talked about the inspiration and history behind each of the new creations. We began with the Loft’s Autumn version of the Sherry Cobbler, a drink that was basically the ‘Look at my wealth’ meme of the 1800s. It has a lot of citrus and crushed ice two things that were pretty damn expensive at the time. The drink had vodka, apple liquor, cranberry, apple and ginger cider, and pomegranates. The Cobbler was tart and sour, amplified by the sherry, with a hint of maple sweetness. There was a lot of apple flavour throughout the drink, although we thought the first few sips tasted a bit cherry-y, which brought back all sorts of flashbacks to The Lady’s summer cherry binge. The drink was light with a dry finish and it is easy to see why this drink, despite being damn expensive back in the old days, would have been so popular.

Loft Fizz2

Gin Fizz No. 53 with dill garnish

We then moved into an area of the cocktail menu we felt quite at home with, gin. Specifically, Loft prepared their Gin Fizz No. 53 (dubbed No. 53 because of all the herbs/Herbie the Love Bug). This was a bit different to other Gin Fizz’s we’ve had. We were served smaller versions of most of the drinks (otherwise it would have been a drunken gramming disaster) and the Gin Fizz’s didn’t seem to have a lot of egg white in there. Instead it was the herbs that were the star of the show. The drink had dill, mint, and thyme and it was the dill that really took over. It gave the drink a really savoury aroma and slightly savoury flavour, which was an interesting and unexpected turn. The use of dill in this drink brought The Lady back to her travels in Russia, where everything had lavish sprinklings of dill. The Gin Fizz No. 53 also used Prosecco instead of the traditional soda water and the Prosecco gave the drink quite a dry finish with a hint of alcohol.

Loft Zombiegram

Tiki kitsch goodness!

Loft Zombie 2

Zombie. Uuuuuunghh.

Things really started to heat up when we moved onto the Zombie. A mix of 4 or 5 different rums, including overproof rum, the Zombie is one of the quintessential Tiki cocktails. Legend has it Donn Beach created the drink to help a hung-over customer get through a business meeting, but instead turned the customer into a zombie for the next few days. Everyone got pretty excited when the Scorpion bowls (Tiki bowls for groups) and sparklers came out. All of a sudden there were a lot of people aiming to get the best photo of the flaming, sparkling Tiki ware and why not, the fire was impressive and added to the theatrics of the evening (but take care). The Zombie was definitely a crowd favourite. Balancing the different rums and fruit juice is a difficult prospect. Too much rum and it’s too strong and difficult to drink while too much fruit juice makes it too sweet and similarly unpleasant. Luckily the Zombies we had were well balanced. There was a nice sweet fruit flavour from the pineapple and passion fruit, but it didn’t fully mask the rum. There was definitely a nice kick to it that reminded you this drink is loaded and ready for bear.

Loft Julep3

Mint Julep with some fancy pants ice

The Lady and I generally like all the cocktails we’ve tried Out & About, but there is one drink that had previously bucked that trend: the Mint Julep. A classic cocktail that is synonymous with Southern Gentleman enjoying the Kentucky Derby we ordered one, thinking we should get our head around the classics, and neither of us liked it. Since then the Mint Julep had been way down the bottom of the cocktail list, but the Loft’s Georgia Julep managed to change that. Sure it had a hell of a bourbon punch to it yet it wasn’t unpleasant. We’re pretty sure the bourbon was infused with mint, which probably gave it that something extra that changed our minds. The bourbon and mint just seemed to combine a lot better in this Julep without being too overpowering. The Georgia Julep was another drink that was up there as a favourite mainly because it managed to change our opinion of the Julep and let us feel like the fine Southern Gentlefolk we’ve always wanted to be.

Loft Contender

The Contender

Next up on the cocktail list was The Contender, a recipe borrowed and inspired by the incredible folk at Eau De Vie. In a typical Eau De Vie style, this cocktail was beautifully presented and tasted absolutely gorgeous! The drink was delightfully sweet and had a lingering smoky flavour from the toasted marshmallow garnish and residual smoking rosemary twig. Despite being a sweet drink, The Contender had a light and smooth texture, which was uniform with the consistency of a marshmallow. The addition of the mandarin was a surprising and enjoyable contribution to this modern classic.

Loft Coffee

The Coffee Experiment

Finally, the The Coffee Experiment was a rich, luscious, and decadent cocktail to polish off the night. Loft’s revolving take on the ever-so-on-trend Espresso Martini, which has been ordered in some fashion 138,000 times over the last two years at Loft, used a dark rum rather than the traditional vodka standard. Loft have opted for this alteration as they believe it has a closer resemblance to the coffee flavours and characteristics than vodka. The Coffee Experiment was an excellent fusion of flavours and gave us an energetic kick at the end of our festivities. The coffee was strong, it went down smoothly, and had a bitter coffee finish with just some dark rum lurking around.  We believe this is possibly our favourite drink of the night, but we’ll be honest, they were all pretty darn delicious!

Loft Dumplings

Truffle Sui Mai

Overall, all the drinks looked and tasted incredible. They were all extraordinarily eye catching, with each cocktail having their own little personality. This was further enhanced by the little stories and background information from our wonderful host Eddie.

Loft Duck

Peking Duck Pancake

The food served throughout the night was equally as delicious. We would like to mention that the staff at Loft made up a special serving of food for The Lady in order to accommodate her vegetarian persuasion. They went out of their way to impress everybody on the table, and made sure everybody was looked after. Their premium quality food and drinks, as well as their high attention to detail, make Loft Oyster and Wine Bar a really special place well worth the visit.

Loft Dessertgram

Deconstructed Cheesecake

It was great to meet other fellow bloggers and Instagramers too. We caught up with our friend Lee from Adelaide Food Central, we met Dee of dBites (to my excitement), and were introduced to the stunning photography of @duydash. There were many other lovely people at the event with which we were were lucky enough to share the evening with.

Overall, we were impressed yet again by our experience at Loft Oyster & Wine Bar. We highly recommend that y’all check out their Autumn menu. What’s not to love about sipping down some cocktails and nibbling on delicious treats?

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Disclaimer: The Cocktail Challenge was invited by Loft Oyster & Wine Bar to their Autumn launch and were provided complimentary cocktails and food for this article. Although this post is sponsored all opinions are our own.

Out & About – Thrift Shop Bar

By The Lady


Image courtesy of Thrift Shop Bar Facebook page.

For a long, long time now, we have been meaning to check out Thrift Shop Bar. This little gem boasts an impressive range of 100% Australian Spirits, as well as locally produced wine and beer. We heard that all the cool kids were going there, so as we are clearly (oh so) cool, we felt it our duty to partake in a slice of the Thrift Shop Bar pie! To our delight, there was a wine tasting on that evening by one of our new favourites Delinquente Wine Co., so we both agreed that it was the perfect opportunity to head on down.


Image courtesy of Thrift Shop Bar Facebook page.

The bar has a unique and refreshing vibe about it. The furniture is foraged from local op-shops. One feature wall is plastered with what looks like old sheet music and the light shades are pre-loved vintage dresses. My particular favourite touch from the bar was the old school glassware. It really reminded me of my grandpa and his home bar he used to love. He would have loved sipping on a whiskey or two at Thrift Shop Bar, that I am sure of!


Image courtesy of Thrift Shop Bar Facebook page.

Throughout the evening, we had several drinks, all of which were equally as delightful. Firstly, we started off with a tasting from Delinquente Wine Co. We started with the Screaming Betty Vermentino, which had a lovely refreshing flavour perfect for hot, Australian summer days. We then sampled the Pretty Boy Nero D’avola Rosato which was described as “a rosé for those who don’t drink rosé”. We can’t agree any more with this sentiment. The Pretty Boy is a perfect gateway wine to the world of rosé if one were so inclined to follow that path in life. Finally, we sampled Roxanne the Razor Nero D’avola & Montepulciano. Personally, I would have to say this was my favourite out of the bunch. It is incredibly easy to drink and would go well with a variety of meals yet it would also be perfect by itself. As you all know already, we loved The Bullet Dodger Montepulciano when we tried it a few weeks back, so it’s really no surprise that we are digging the other flavours that DWC have on offer.


Gingerbread Black Russian (L), Popcorn Sour (R)

Then, we were drawn to the vast cocktail menu. As it is scarily close to Christmas, I opted for the Gingerbread Black Russian. Oh my, this was tasty. The drink had a perfect blend of spiciness and richness. It really did taste light naughty, alcoholic gingerbread men too! The Gentleman opted for the Popcorn Sour which was oh so buttery. The drink had a lovely creaminess also, and tasted particularly like a lemon meringue pie with a hint of sour citrus. We are now 100% convinced that we must invest in a bottle of 666 Autumn Butter Vodka that was used to create this delightful cocktail. Really, what is not to love about the marriage of butter and vodka? We here at Cocktail Challenge HQ are clearly prepping our stomachs for food galore on the 25th as we are continually drawn to foodie cocktails. Delicious! Whilst drinking these cocktails, the bartender who made them came and sat down next to us and spoke about how he had created the two cocktails we had selected. He was very informative by explaining the creation process and it added that extra personal touch to Thrift Shop Bar.


Storm In A Teapot

Then, we decided to share a “Pot Tail” .i.e a cocktail inside a teapot. Yes people, shit just got real. We decided to go for the Storm in a Teapot, because it sounded delightful and we loved the name. Again, a lovely spiciness and rich flavour engulfed us in a refreshing and festive manner. We could really tell that the ginger beer was homemade, with lovely natural and zesty notes. The spiced rum was a perfect addition to this pot tail! Ho ho ho indeed! The Storm In A Teapot was beautifully presented, being served in an elegant gold teapot with cute little teacups to boot that made you look damn fancy while you were drinking it.


Finally, we polished off the evening with two different glasses of Delinquente Wine – the Pretty Boy Nero D’avola Rosato and the Roxanne the Razor NDM.  Also, we were never without free popcorn and we think we may have consumed our body weight in popcorn that evening!


Pretty Boy Nero D’avola Rosato (L) Roxanne the Razor NDM (R)

Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed our Thrift Shop Bar experience. We are always happy to drink in a gorgeous setting, especially when the establishment is as enthusiastic about Australian liquor as we are. Onya Thrift Shop!


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Out & About – Loft Oyster & Wine Bar Take Two

By The Gentleman and The Lady

Bangkok Breakfast (L) and The Orange Daisy (R)

Bangkok Breakfast (L) and The Orange Daisy (R)

Sometimes when you’ve struck a good thing it’s best not to mess with it. The last time we went to Gouger Street’s Loft Oyster & Wine Bar we had just finished an intense period of university study. You know that time of year when every deadline feels like it’s on the same day and you find yourself forgetting what sunlight or normal sleeping patterns are like as you madly rush to get everything done. Yeah, good times. Well, that wonderful time of yeah came again, but we’re through to the other side now and everything is coming up Milhouse! So, in the mood to celebrate, we decided to head back to Gouger Street and sample some more delicious cocktails from the Loft.

White Rabbit (Top) and Cold Drip Negroni (Bottom)

White Rabbit (Top) and Cold Drip Negroni (Bottom)

While we were at the Loft to celebrate it was also a bit of a last hurrah for the current cocktail menu. The Loft has a classic cocktail menu and a rotating menu of new specialties and we tip our hat to the Loft Twitter handler for giving us the heads up on the upcoming menu change so we could sneak in a taste before it changes. From the specialties we tried the White Rabbit, the Cold Drip Negroni, and the Bangkok Breakfast and we also went for the classic Orange Daisy.

White Rabbit

White Rabbit

As soon as The Lady saw the White Rabbit she knew I was going to order it. It was a mix of brown butter washed dark rum, smoked maple syrup, orange and lemon juice. Brown butter and smoky maple syrup? Sign me up! The drink was surprisingly very citrus forward at first. You got a lot of orange aroma and sweet fruit flavour. About halfway through the drink though you get hit with the smoky maple flavour and aroma. It was a really delicious transition of flavours that was topped off with a smooth spiciness from the butter washed rum and a definite lingering citrus tang. An intriguing and easy to drink cocktail.

Cold Drip Negroni

Cold Drip Negroni

As much as I was tempted by the White Rabbit I also had a strong suspicion The Lady would choose the latest Coffee Experiment, the Cold Drip Negroni. Gin and coffee are two of The Lady’s favourite things and she rarely misses an opportunity to combine the two. Throw in some Campari and sweet vermouth and you’ve got a really good time. The coffee and Campari pair excellently to provide a delightful bitterness and who can resist the heavenly aroma of coffee tinged with citrusy orange. Plus, we were rather impressed by the massive hunk of ice used to chill the drink (yes when you drink a lot of cocktails ice size becomes an important thing). It was both practical, keeping the drink cool but not diluted, and looked rather nice, sticking out the top of the glass. One for all the coffee lovers.

Cold Drip Negroni

Cold Drip Negroni

The other two cocktails caught our eye not only because they sounded amazing, but because they offered both a regular and a small size. It’s not that we didn’t think we could drink a whole other cocktail (trust us, we most certainly could), we just appreciated the option of a slightly cheaper option. We’re more than happy to pay what a good cocktail is worth. We’re also poor students so the option to try something that sounds so nice for a bit cheaper price is definitely quite attractive to us. The Bangkok Breakfast was served in a cute little milk bottle with a straw. It mixed citrus vodka, breakfast tea, lime, ginger, and lemongrass. The drink wasn’t as citrusy as we thought it would be. Instead the ginger was really dominate and had a really pleasant spiciness that left a nice tingly sensation on your tongue. To us it screamed hot summer’s day as it was refreshing and easy to drink. The Orange Daisy was also quite a good accompaniment to the Bangkok Breakfast. It was similarly refreshing and tasted kind of like an alcoholic soft drink. The orange and cardamom cordial was not too syrupy or too sweet. It was delightfully balanced and again we loved the citrus flavours, mixed something a little bit different. Without even realising we went through a bit of a citrus cocktail tasting, but we’re okay with that when the results are so good.

Bangkok Breakfast

Bangkok Breakfast

This was our second visit to the Loft after struggling through study hell and we’re starting to feel like this is the start of a great tradition. As long as they keep making cocktails as good as these those long nights of study may just be worth it. Good cocktails are always the best motivation.

Orange Daisy

Orange Daisy

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Out & About – Chihuahua Bar Take Two

By The Gentleman and The Lady

You have probably noticed by now that we like to go out to bars, but we don’t do reviews per se. Instead we just recommend and comment on the things we drink. That means we can quite easily visit the places we like several times and try different things (poor us) and tell you about it. It’s for this reason that we decided to revisit Peel Street’s resident Mexican hole in the wall Chihuahua Bar to sample some more fine Mexican Cocktails.

Image courtesy of the Chihuahua Bar Facebook page

If you didn’t read about our first visit you can check it out here. Basically we are quite big fans of the fun, kitschy decor and that hasn’t changed second time around. This visit we decided on something a little less crazy than the fresh fruit bombs, although it was hard not to get one because they were so good last time! We opted for a pretty classic tequila cocktail, the Paloma, and a Mexican twist on a favourite of ours, the Negroni, which was called a Rosita. Both of the drinks used Jose Cuervo Tradicional tequila and were pretty damn delicious, and eye-catching, in their own way.


The Paloma

The Paloma mixes the tequila with lime and grapefruit soda, giving it a really nice pale pinky orange colour. The drink was surprisingly still and not as sweet as we were expecting. You hear soda and immediately think super sweet, but this had a really nice tangy, sourness to it and basically the grapefruit soda cuts the real booziness of the tequila so you can actually realise, “ha, this is what tequila tastes like”. The Rosita replaces the Negroni’s gin with tequila, but keeps the Antica Formula and Campari so it still has that amazing bright red colour. Being a Mexican twist on the Negroni it had its own flavour, with the tequila showing up nicely the same way a good gin does in a Negroni. The drink had a gorgeous aroma of oranges from the big orange peel that was just heavenly. There also seemed to be a touch less bitterness in the Rosita, compared to a traditional Negroni, but there’s still a great blend of flavours.


Rosita – Chihuahua’s Mexican take on a Negroni

We reckon both of these drinks would be the perfect accompaniment to some Mexican food and and it was probably the only thing missing, some great food that we could wash down with the already fantastic cocktails. We are pretty sure we overhead that food may feature in the future and we hope that’s true. A Paloma, a Rosita, salty corn chips and some guacamole and you’ve got yourself a damn good time!


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Out & About – Bank Street Social Take Two

By The Gentleman

Bank Street Social

After visiting new local bar Bank Street Social on International Rum Day we were invited back to sample some more of the bars delicious Australian gin. We also ventured back there as a bit of a collaboration with fellow blogger Lee from Adelaide Food Central, for a night of food and drinking blogging. Sometimes it’s good to be a blogger.


We revisited Bread & Bone for dinner and you can read Lee’s review of our experience at his website. The Lady enjoyed another of their fine Negronis and I tried the Feral Hop Hog IPA. The Hop Hog was very fruity and refreshing with little bitterness, a thoroughly drinkable and enjoyable beer.


You already know our feelings about Bank Street Social’s decor. We just love the old school, speakeasy style. Hot tip, if you want to really soak in the design of the bar and enjoy your drink while quietly relaxing in a booth then head their on Wednesday night. The bar was relatively quite and had a far more subdued atmosphere compared to the crazy, high-energy of a Saturday night. The relaxed atmosphere allowed us to really notice all the little details that help make the bar come alive, like the old photos near the entrance and the cabinet filled with various old bottles, clocks and books. Coming on a slower night also allowed us to talk to the bar staff who really know their stuff. We spoke to Cameron who was knowledgeable and passionate about the experience Bank Street Social is trying to offer. We had a good chat about the bar’s focus on Australian spirits and the difficult, but rewarding experience of introducing bar goers to the wonderful world of Australian spirits.

Botanic Australis Gin

The Lady and I didn’t need any encouragement to drink Australian and we had a hard time choosing a different Australian gin to try. We eventually settled on the Botanic Australis Gin from Queensland’s Mt Uncle Distillery. The gin is made with 14 native Australian botanicals including Lemon Scented Gum, River Mint, Wattle Seed, Lilly Pilly, Lemon Myrtle, native ginger and Finger Limes. The gin has a lot of flavours going on but it works so well. Smelling the gin in the bottle it had a really pleasant cinnamon aroma. Cameron prepared a simple gin and tonic with Schweppes Tonic Water and an orange twist. The orange added a pleasant citrus scent and a hint of sweetness to the drink. Paired with the tonic water the Botanic Australis is so lovely to drink. You get a whole bunch of different herbal flavours before a really pleasant mint and pepper finish that leaves your mouth feeling so fresh. We could definitely drink these all night.

Bank Street Social

We finished the evening with what is fast becoming a favourite drink of ours, an Australian Martini. There is such a growth in good quality Australian gin and vermouth that you would be foolish not to pair them together. This time our barman mixed the drink with West Winds Sabre Gin and Maidenii Dry Vermouth. To make it just that extra bit special, and to enhance the flavours present in the martini our bartender also roasted some rosemary over the top of the drink to release the flavours and aromas from the rosemary before dropping it in the glass. The martini was so smooth and easy to drink. It had warmth and intensity from the spirits but it wasn’t so strong that it was unpleasant. The combination of the rosemary with the gin and vermouth was very nice. It really enhanced the flavours and the aroma of the martini and took it to that next level. It’s becoming very hard for us to go past an Australian Martini when they keep being this good.

West Winds Gin

Bank Street Social certainly didn’t disappoint on our second visit. The relaxed atmosphere, knowledgeable staff and quality drinks made it the perfect way to power through hump day and celebrate the fact that the week was half over.

Australian Martini

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Australian Martini

Disclaimer: The Cocktail Challenge was invited back to Bank Street Social and provided with complimentary gin and tonics for this article, but paid for the martinis. Although this post is sponsored all opinions are our own.

Out & About – Four Pillars Gin Launch at Mother Vine Bar

By The Gentleman and The Lady

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The other day we mentioned that things were changing here at The Cocktail Challenge with big things happening that we were very excited about. Aside from getting our act together and getting some better branding, what we were really excited about was the opportunity to go to a local launch of Cocktail Challenge favourite Four Pillars. We were excited to not only try the new Gunpowder Proof Gin that Four Pillars were launching, but to checkout new East End joint Mother Vine for the first time since it opened recently. Gin and a cool new venue, count us in!

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For those of you who don’t remember Four Pillars are one of the new breed of Australian craft distillers. They are located in Victoria’s Yarra Valley and the inside word from the event revealed they will soon be able to move to their own location after occupying a limited space in the back of  a winery. We will definitely be heading over to checkout the new location when it is ready. They launched with their Rare Dry Gin and won a double gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, beating out industry titan Hendrick’s, a surprising but deserved award. It was quite interesting to listen to the guys from Four Pillars talk about winning the double gold, as they revealed that they only entered the event to gain some valuable feedback and criticism on the blend they had developed for the Rare Dry-Gin. The gin uses some native Australian flavours, including lemon myrtle and Tasmanian pepperberry leaf, which are obviously quite new to gin distilling and they wanted to know how the flavours were mixing. Apparently they worked rather well!

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The event really showed off the Four Pillars range quite well. We started the afternoon with a Gin & Tonic made with Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin and Fever-Tree Mediterranean Tonic Water. The Mediterranean Tonic Water isn’t the standard Fever-Tree you’ll find around town, that’s the Indian, and Stuart from Four Pillars reckons it’s the best tonic water going around. (Given that the lads from Four Pillars initially wanted to develop a tonic water worthy of Australian drinkers, this is really saying something!) The Gin and Tonic was refreshing and very tasty, a perfect way to kickoff the afternoon.

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The Gin and Tonic was followed by a damn good martini. This particular martini was again made with the Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin and it also used another locally distilled product, Maidenii Dry Vermouth. The combination of the Four Pillars and the Maidenii gave the martini a really nice spiciness and the two spirits really complemented each other well as they both feature native Australian flavours. It was just a really well made martini that was so easy to drink.

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The afternoon finished with a go around with the star of the show, the new Gunpowder Proof Gin. The Gunpowder Proof Gin is marketed as a barman’s gin, meaning it’s the perfect gin to mix cocktails with as it has big flavours and can take a lot of mixers and still give you that great gin taste. As Cam and Stu say, this gin is able to “stand up by itself in a drink”. The Gunpowder Proof Gin features a few new botanicals including tumeric, finger limes and ginger that give a flavour and aroma distinct from the original Rare Dry Gin. For the event the Gunpowder Proof Gin was mixed in a classic Negroni. This was the perfect drink for the final cocktail of the event as not only was it made using the brand-spanking-new Gunpowder Proof Gin, the drink itself looked absolutely gorgeous. It almost looked like a giant sparkling ruby had been placed in each glass. Being 58.8% alcohol, we certainly could tell that this was, indeed, a gin that could hold its own in a drink. Surprisingly, given the high alcohol percentage, this cocktail was by no means overpowering or too much (can gin ever really be ‘too much’?). Instead, the Four Pillars Gunpowder Negroni is a confident cocktail that packs a punch and isn’t afraid to speak its mind. A beautiful mix of big gin flavours with a pleasant bitterness to finish from the Campari.

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We were also lucky enough to have a long chat with both Stuart and Cameron, who told us of the history behind the brand (including a jealousy inducing road trip through America to sample and soak in the massive craft distilling scene), their future plans for Four Pillars (including a possible companion for their gorgeous copper still Wilma) as well as a discussion about our long and blossoming Twitter friendship. It was really great to meet the people behind Four Pillars and see how passionate they are about their product.

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Mothervine was a gorgeous venue for this event, and it was a real treat to see how they had transformed the space from the previous tenant (now across the road) East End Cellars. We are looking forward to going back again to experience their true colours as a wine bar and to experience what they do best.

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We feel very privileged to have been invited to the Adelaide launch of Four Pillars. While it has not officially been released, we can’t wait to get our hands on a bottle of the oh-so-confident Gunpowder Proof Gin. Not only is this gin mighty marvellous, we also may or may not be in withdrawal from this gorgeous liquor. We would never want to be called quitters, so there is really no point in fighting our feelings for FP. Could this be love? We think so!

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Disclaimer: The Cocktail Challenge was invited by Four Pillars to this launch and provided with free cocktails  for this article. Although this post is sponsored all opinions are our own.

Out & About – Bank Street Social

By The Lady

Bank St

Over the weekend, The Gentleman and I were invited out to the new and trendy West End bar Bank Street Social. I was intrigued to try out this little place, mainly because I heard that in the process of fitting our their venue, the owners of the bar, as well as their kind friends and family carried around 7000 bricks down the stairs to the basement space in order to finish the gorgeous exposed brick wall. Let me tell you right now, their effort was worth it. This wall is pretty gosh darn impressive. The interiors remind me of an old fashioned, almost secret and hidden bar. The space is also surprisingly large, the bar is hidden downstairs and you expect to walk down into a cramped little space, but it’s quite an open and long bar that didn’t get too cramped even on a busy Saturday night. We also felt very hip and trendy being in Bank Street Social, which I think goes hand in hand with the feeling of exclusivity and old school hidden bar charm! Being inside this gorgeous space, you would never guess that there is an array of fast-food establishments surrounding the entrance. However, I imagine these joints would come in handy for those who have perhaps had one too many!

Bank St

Bank St The Smoke and Coke


Coincidentally, that same day we discovered that it was actually International Rum Day! So we decided the best course of action would be, of course, to drink up some tasty rum! We had heard a lot about Stolen Rum, those cheeky New Zealanders across the Tasman, previously and were eager to try some out. Upon recommendation from our friend behind the bar, we were served up a delicious portion of Stolen Spiced Rum with Coke and Orange, known as a ‘Smoke and Coke’. The Stolen Spiced Rum was an experience I am hoping to repeat over and over. This rum blew my mind. Stolen incorporates fenugreek, vanilla beans as well as coffee beans which ultimately give this rum a delicious and dessert like flavour. Combined with Coke and topped with an orange slice this was the perfect way to serve this drink. Top stuff!

Bank St Bank St  Bank St

We got a little excited and told all our friends to order this beauty which resulted in it selling out. While this saddened me greatly, it gave us an opportunity to try out some more of what Bank Street Social had on offer. We also ordered some faithful and crowd pleasing gin and tonics. Always a winner in our books! We opted for two offerings from South Australia’s own Kangaroo Island Spirits, the KIS Old Tom Aged Gin and KIS Wild Gin. Bank Street Social feature an unbelivably wide selection of Australian spirits and beer. It’s great to see establishments like this supporting other locals, particularly when those locals make some damn fine booze. The Gentleman first made me aware of the Old Tom Aged Gin because I love gin and cats, and the label has both! The Old Tom makes a sweeter gin and tonic than usual, but it’s still damn fine sipping. These were another perfect choice for our classy night out. We love gin a lot. So, so much!

Bank St

KIS Old Tom Aged Gin and Tonic


All in all, we had a grand time at Bank Street Social. Not only were we wowed by the delicious selection of fine local and international liquors on offer, but we were also impressed with the gorgeous decor and felt like proper socialites in Adelaide’s own social club.


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Out & About – Chihuahua Bar

By The Lady


Last week, The Gentleman and I went on a bit of a date. Oooh la la, I hear you say and I’d have to agree. Not only was the company I was keeping rather lovely, but also the places we went. Very oooh la la indeed!


Firstly, we went to the new restaurant Bread & Bone, which is situated in a little white tiled lane way between Adelaide’s Peel Street and Leigh Street. Let me tell you, this place is pretty trendy with tasty food to boot! We both ordered burgers, The Gentleman chose the oh-so meaty B & B Burger and the Veggie Burger for me, with a side of onion rings (obviously!) and I also ordered a Negroni. Given that I had had a rather long day without any sort of break, I pretty much inhaled my burger much to the amazement of The Gentleman! This place has a really cool feel, with great burgers and delicious liquor. For all you hip cats looking to check it out just be aware they don’t take reservations, but if it is busy you can head downstairs to new bar Maybe Mae. We are really looking forward to checking Maybe Mae out as well so keep your eyes peeled for a post about them hopefully very soon!


Burger time at Bread & Bone

After our delightful dinner, we then travelled the very short distance across the street to another new West End establishment : Chihuahua Bar. We were so impressed with this place we completely forgot to take notes on the drinks we had, and almost forgot to take photos! There is a definite mood lighting feel going on in Chihuahua, so we just got so caught up in the datey, mood-lighty moment!

Chihuahua 1

Alas, what we can tell you is that we enjoyed our drinks thoroughly! As mentioned earlier, I was rather drained from my long day and was craving a caffeine hit. When I saw the Espresso Martini on the cocktail list, it was a done deal. The Gentleman also noticed that not only did they make a more classic Espresso Martini, with vodka, they also made a more Mexican version, befitting the name Chihuahua Bar, with tequila. At first I was skeptical but as The Gentleman pointed out it’s almost too rude not to try tequila or mescal in a Mexican bar. Any trepidation I had was soon forgotten as this drink was probably the best coffee cocktail I have ever had perhaps, of course, with the exception of our Cold Hug and The Eastender we created! (We’re not biased at all …). Nevertheless, this coffee inclusive cocktail was just the thing I wanted and was absolutely amazing. It was so smooth with barely any of the overpowering alcohol kick you might have expected. Just mind blowing. Please order it just so we can all share my joy.


Espresso Martini at Chihuahua Bar

The Gentleman ordered this incredible drink called (I think) a Fresh Fruit Bomb, which was served as a shot IN PASSION FRUIT SKIN! So creative and such a refreshing and unique way to serve a drink. It was the perfect way to sip and enjoy a delicious mescal with a wonderful blend of fruit and chili heat. Also there is a little bit of the pulp and seeds left in the skin that you can scoop out at the end. I don’t know if you’re meant to do this but The Gentleman did it anyway and said it was delicious and well worth the possible odd looks from the rest of the bar. It was also very affordable so we will definitely be ordering this little beauty again.

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Served in passion fruit skin. Now, that’s a horse of a different colour!

Due to the fact that Chihuahua has a super romantic mood lighting vibe going on, photo taking was a difficult task. Trust me when I say that this place rocks a super cute, kitsch and stylish interior design all at the same time. There is a vibrant mix of colours everywhere you look and fake flowers and leaves cover the wall in an alluring manner. I would love to sit upstairs next time and sip away on a few more of their cocktails they have on offer. I am sure they will not disappoint!

Chihuahua Bar Adelaide

Mood lighting at Chihuahua Bar

Chihuahua Bar is a truly unique experience like no other bar in Adelaide. Do yourself a favour and go visit this adorable bar. Maybe even take a special someone so you can also have a unique date night with your favourite lovely. Oooh la la indeed!

A sample of the Chihuahua Bar decor in better light. Image courtesy of the Chihuahua Bar Facebook page

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Out & About – La Moka

By The Lady

La Moka 2

A while ago, I was walking through Peel Street in my beloved hometown Adelaide as a flash of yellow caught my attention. It turns out that this was the beginning stages of what is now the new West End cafe/bar/all-round cool venue La Moka. After this sighting, The Gentleman and I put this fine, marigold establishment on our to-do list. After much anticipation, we were able to visit recently and we are delighted to share our thoughts (and sneaky photos) with y’all.

La Moka 1

First of all, this place is super cute and a delightful place to sit down and enjoy yourself. The interiors are gorgeous with fun splashes of yellow and warm tones everywhere you look. The decor and finishings bring me back to my 2012 summer holiday in Italy where I ate pasta and sipped on cocktails. Any place that helps me feel like I am on an overseas holiday gets a gold star in my books. While I didn’t get to take a peek at the upstairs area, I am sure it is also just as beautiful. Also, there are patterns everywhere you look here, and totally in a fabulous way that I 100% endorse. I am a lover of interesting patterns and complimentary patterns. For example, I pretty much want to steal this apartment. La Moka’s mix of colours and fusion of delightful patterns is spot on and makes me feel oh so happy!

La Moka 3

Pattern galore! Floor tiles, green wall tiles, gorgeous yellow chairs, wooden bar etc. I am in love.

This time, we opted just to buy some drinks but we would love to try out some of their tasty treats on offer. They have a great looking range of breakfast and lunch options as well as lots of sweet treats for any time of day. Next time, I have my heart set on a cannoli. They also do coffee all day and into the night to satisfy your craving for good coffee whenever it hits you. I ordered the Milano-Torino and The Gentleman went for the Aperol Spritz. Both these drinks were vibrant in colour and flavour as well as refreshingly delicious. The Spritz had this heavenly orange citrus aroma that just assaulted your senses in the best possible way. Despite the cool weather it went down a dream, but I have a feeling the mix of Aperol, prosecco, soda and orange will taste even better on a hot summer’s day. The deep red colour of the Milano-Torino enticed you to a very bitter, but oh so enjoyable drink. The drink was made with Campari and Carpano Antica Formula. We weren’t sure what Carpano Antica Formula was, but a quick Google search revealed it is a sweet red vermouth from, you guessed it, Italy. It’s noted for its balance of bitter-sweet flavours and that definitely shined through when paired with the Campari in the Milano-Torino. It was the type of drink you want to sit and slowly sip, while letting the day pass by, surrounded by stylish decor and plenty of food. Just what La Moka happens to offer.

La Moka 5

(L) Milano-Torino, (R) Spritz

It may be new to the city but already La Moka has already made an impression on The Gentleman and myself. Next time we’ll have to properly partake in the aperitivo culture La Moka aims to bring to Adelaide, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t already be taking yourselves down here for some post-work Campari and nibbles!


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